Today, I had the pleasure of hosting a craft at a local marketplace. We made replicas of the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games medals.
The craft is simple but fun and a great conversation/lesson starter. The main supplies you will need are glue, purple ribbon, gold (or silver) glitter, crayons or other crafty supplies to embellish your medals, and a printer. I printed mine in black and white on a pale yellow paper. You could print on card stock to make your medals sturdier but regular weight paper worked just fine. A link to the FREE printable of the 2012 medal is included at the bottom of this post.
If you’re up for detail work, grab some white paint and add rings, London 2012, and lines like you see on the real ribbons.
We also learned some interesting facts about the Olympics and the medals.
- In ancient times, athletes were awarded olive wreaths to crown their heads instead of medals.
- The 2012 Gold Medal is made up of 92.5% SILVER and only 1.34% GOLD. The rest is COPPER.
- Despite gold making up a tiny percent of the gold medals, they are worth about $650 in precious metals due the current high price of gold.
- The front of Summer Olympic medals always show the Greek Goddess of Victory, Nike. The Host City designs the back of the medal.
- The color of the ribbon also changes. This year, the ribbons are a deep purple.
- The Summer Olympics are held every 4 years in a different city. This year the games are hosted by London, United Kingdom and in four years Rio de Janeiro, Brazil will host the 2016 games.
- An Olympiad is a period time measuring 4 years. The London 2012 Games are officially called the Games of the XXX Olympiad. XXX is the Roman numeral for 30 and we are now within the 30th Olympiad since the start of modern Olympic games.
- Modern Olympics Games were started in 1896 but the games have roots dating back to 776 B.C. That’s almost 2800 years ago! Wow!
-Summer Sports include: Aquatics, Archery, Badminton, Basketball, Boxing, Canoe/Kayaking, Cycling, Equestrian, Fencing, Football, Golf, Gymnastics, Handball, Hockey, Judo, Modern pentathlon, Rowing, Rugby, Sailing, Shooting, Table tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis, Triathlon, Volleyball, Weightlifting, Wrestling.
- WORD PLAY: Don’t meddle with an Olympic athlete’s medal which is made of precious metals for he or she has shown great mettle during the games.
-205 different countries (and a few territories) are competing in the 2012 Olympic Games.
Learn more about the many countries competing this year with highly acclaimed The Barefoot Books World Atlas by Nick Crane for children. The World Atlas was released less than a year ago and is already in it’s 4th printing due popularity.
“This fresh and informative atlas offers engaging, fact-filled overviews of Earth’s oceans and continents….With its emphasis on sustainability, interconnectedness, and diversity, the book offers young armchair travelers and globe-trotters much to discover” — Publishers Weekly
Ideas: Watch a few games and then find the winner’s home country in your Atlas and learn fun facts about the surrounding region.
Hang up the included pull-out world map next to your TV. When a game starts look for each competing country on the map. Isn’t it amazing that people who live so far apart, speak different languages, and who come from completely different backgrounds can share a common passion for their chosen sport?
You can make your own medals by downloading the FREE PRINTABLE (PDF) 2012 OLYMPIC MEDAL CRAFT here.